In March, Watters alighted on Columbia University. This exchange ensued:
Watters: Vladimir Putin just invaded Ukraine. Are you outraged by that?
Some woman: I just woke up.
After replaying some of Watters’ oeuvre, Colbert satirized, “You can’t make this stuff up, folks — at least not without an editing team.”
And that’s where Colbert dove into the mix, orchestrating a “Make Your Own Watters’ World” stunt segment, in which he dispatched a correspondent to Columbia University in an attempt to fact-check the impression cast by the real “Watters’ World.” Not so much: Students managed to identify a picture of Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan, along with nailing several other questions.
So maybe “Watters’ World” edits its way to cheap laughs. If so, it follows in a cheap television tradition, one plowed in part by former “Tonight Show” host Jay Leno, whose “Jaywalking” expeditions drew their pop from watching people fail civics quizzes. “Jimmy Kimmel Live” had some fun with the ignorance of passersby about competing versions of the iPhone.